High temperatures prompt warnings in Ontario, Quebec
Published Saturday, July 14, 2012 11:54AM EDT
Last Updated Saturday, July 14, 2012 9:10PM EDT
Residents of Ontario and Quebec have been encouraged to seek out cool, air conditioned areas as temperatures in both provinces are expected to climb within the next few days.
A warm, humid air mass moved into Quebec this weekend, bringing uncomfortably high temperatures to a large part of the province.
Environment Canada has issued high heat and humidity warnings for southern and central Quebec.
Under the warning, people are urged to limit physical activity, drink lots of water and regularly check on those who may be vulnerable to heat such as seniors and children.
On Saturday, Montrealers were hitting the beach in droves, in an effort to escape the record-breaking heat.
The temperature in Montreal reached 33 C, but with the humidex it felt more like a sweltering 40 C.
Further west in Ottawa, the heat had officials concerned over the water level in the Rideau River.
Officials issued a level-two drought warning for the Rideau River watershed on Friday, asking residents who live along the watershed to reduce water use by 20 per cent.
A special weather statement was also issued for southern Ontario, where temperatures are also expected to rise over the next few days.
Residents lined up to purchase fans and air conditioners across Toronto, as Saturday’s temperature soared to 30 C.
Residents in the area of Don Mills suffered and sweated, after a power outage that lasted 90 minutes hit their part of town.
A smog advisory was issued for parts of southern and eastern Ontario on Saturday, including Toronto, Kingston and Belleville.
The Ministry of the Environment warned that hot and sunny conditions with light southerly winds would result in elevated smog levels across the region.
Areas from Toronto to Haliburton are expected to see the mercury hit temperatures in the low to mid-30s this weekend and through to Wednesday.
“If you like that kind of weather, we’re in for quite a hot spell,” CP24 reporter Katie Simpson told CTV News Channel on Saturday. “If not, you may need to seek out some shade.”
Environment Canada said that Toronto may set a record for the hottest July ever.
An average high for southern Ontario around this time of year, according to Environment Canada, would range between 25 and 28 C.
Some reprieve is expected in southern Ontario on Sunday, when isolated showers and thunderstorms are expected to drive temperatures down.
Unusually high temperatures have gripped several parts of Canada in recent weeks.
On the Prairies, uncharacteristically hot weather prompted heat warnings and rolling blackouts around Alberta early last week.
Around the same time, Saskatchewan and Manitoba were confronted with temperatures as high as 31 C in Saskatoon and Winnipeg.
South of the border, a widespread drought is affecting crops in the U.S. Midwest.
The drought follows a heat wave in which more than 170 all-time temperature records were broken or tied, according to the U.S. National Climatic Data Centre.